Danish Agro is an agricultural cooperative involved in the purchase and distribution of animal feed, ingredients, vitamin mixes, seeds, fertilizers and agricultural machinery across Northern Europe. Established in 1901, the company is now co-operatively owned by 9,000 Danish farmers. Through its subsidiaries, Danish Agro produces vegetable oils, fat and biofuels for the food, biodiesel and feed industries. With 19 fodder processing plants, the group produces 2.8 million tonnes of fodder annually. In addition to the agribusiness, machinery and feed business segments, Danish Agro is involved in the production of chickens, fresh eggs and pasteurised egg products through its subsidiary networks.
Danish Agro is active in the agricultural input, agricultural products and commodities, and animal protein segment. While performing right below average in the agricultural commodities and animal protein segments, it shows a weaker performance compared to its peers in the agricultural input segment. Due to its lack of commitments, Danish Agro ranks at the bottom in all the three segments in the social inclusion area. In nutrition, the company outperforms its peers in the agricultural commodities and animal protein sector in its commitment to food safety. However, it lacks to define its contributions to address food security, thereby lagging behind its peers on the topic in all the three segments. Although the company discloses on key topics such as GHG emissions and deforestation, there remains room for strengthening its commitments. Further, the company sits in the bottom half compared to its peers in governance and strategy.
Sustainable development strategy
While the company has key sustainability objectives covering topics within the Food and Agriculture Benchmark’s three dimensions of environment, nutrition and social inclusion, it has an opportunity to disclose a sustainable development strategy and how it identifies and prioritises the topics where it has the most impact.
Governance and accountability for sustainable development
While responsibility for the company’s sustainable development strategy lies with the company’s corporate social responsibility board, Danish Agro has an opportunity to strengthen accountability by assigning this responsibility to its highest governance body and disclosing further information on its decision-making processes and oversight responsibilities, as well as linking sustainability objectives and targets to roles and remuneration
The company does not disclose stakeholder engagement activities, including how it selects the stakeholders, nor an overview of the topics discussed or their outcomes.
Scope 1 and 2 greenhouse gas emissions While the company has set a scope 1 and 2 GHG emissions reduction target, it has an opportunity to disclose quantitative evidence to demonstrate progress against this target.
Protection of terrestrial natural ecosystem While the company discloses that it is working towards achieving sustainable procurement of soy, it has an opportunity to strengthen its commitment by setting targets for achieving deforestation and conversion-free supply chains for its relevant high-risk commodities.
Soil health and agrobiodiversity The company does not disclose that it is adopting sustainable production practices that improve soil health and increase agrobiodiversity.
Danish Agro demonstrates that all agribusiness companies that produce and work with feed are good manufacturing practice (GMP+) certified. However, the company has an opportunity to improve its performance by disclosing the proportion of suppliers certified to widely recognised industry-specific certification programmes.
Availability of healthy foods The company does not disclose a commitment or activities to increase the availability of healthy and nutritious foods nor to address food security.
Workforce nutrition The company does not disclose sufficient evidence of having any workforce nutrition programmes.
The company does not disclose a commitment to prohibit child labour in its supply chain.
While the company commits to prohibiting forced labour in its own operations, it has an opportunity to disclose a requirement for its suppliers to adhere to the same standards and prohibit the retainment of workers’ personal documents and the restriction of workers’ freedom of movement.
Living wage The company does not disclose that it pays its workers a living wage or requires its suppliers to do the same. Neither has it set targets to do so in the future.
Core social indicators
The core social indicators are part of the social inclusion measurement area. These indicators assess societal expectations of business conduct that companies should meet if they aspire to be part of a system transformation that leaves no one behind.
Danish Agro publicly commits to supporting and respecting human rights. However, the company does not disclose the policies that expects its suppliers to commit to respecting ILO core labour rights. The company demonstrates a lack of disclosure on how to identify and address its most salient human rights issues. To conclude, no public information was found on accessible grievance mechanisms.
Although the company has a publicly available policy statement committing it to respect the health and safety of workers, it does not disclose quantitative information on the topics, and it does not expect its supply chain partners to commit to respecting the health and safety of their workers. In relation to gender equality, Danish Agro discloses time-bound targets but it does not provide a public commitment to gender equality and women’s empowerment nor has female supervisory board members. To conclude, no evidence of policies or commitments related to decent work topics as living wage, workforce diversity, and collective bargaining were found in public domain.
Danish Agro publicly commits to protecting personal data and has a privacy statement on the use of personal data. In addition, the company has a policy prohibiting bribery and corruption. However, there is room for the company to improve its disclosure on the steps to take to identify and address these issues, purchasing criteria, code of conduct and code of conduct for suppliers. To conclude, the company fails to provide publicly policies or commitments in relation to key ethical business topics as tax and political engagement.